Review and Media by Amazing Spidey
Episode #21 - The Armour Wars, Part One
Directed By: Dan Thompson
Music By: Keith Emmerson
Animation By: Koko Enterprises
Guest Starring: Philip Abbott as Nick Fury, Efrem Zimbalist Jr. as Justin Hammer, Jamie Horton as The Controller, John Reilly as Hawkeye/Beetle, Dorian Harewood as Stilt Man, and Stu Rosen as Crimson Dynamo
Review:This 2-part episode is quite easily the best episode the series did. It was full of fanboy cameos, the long awaited Iron Man vs. Hawkeye fight, and some great character development for Tony, who has now been driven insane by grief over the harm his designs have done to thousands of people.
The episode starts off with one of the greatest fights the show ever did, Iron Man fighting Crimson Dynamo at a Russian Nuclear Power plant, which actually ends up with the nuke going off, causing countless deaths and injuries in Russia! On a childrenísí cartoon! All this on top of Dynamoís suicide! Whilst itís not an in your face death like say, Dan Turpin on Superman, itís still badass for a superhero cartoon. Whilst I'm the subject, what is it with Russians and suicide on this cartoon?
This of course drives our hero crazy, and then, in what is simply the very best way to describe itÖ itís ass whooping time! The episode is absolutely filled with fanboy cameos (Stiltman!), the return of old villains (Blizzard!), and of course, the long awaited Iron Man/Hawkeye confrontation!
Unlike most Ďhero goes madí episodes, I felt his motivation here was a superb idea. The very first episode of this season shows signs of the pressure finally getting to Tony (so much so that he fakes his own death!) and with the villains now using armour he designed for good to commit acts of terrorism. Starkís explanation to HOMER really says it all;
HOMER: You do seem unusually distressed, Sir.
TONY: Distressed?! These are my own designs! Someone got hold of my armours secrets and used them to melt half a county!
HOMER: Interesting. The very technology you designed to keep yourself aliveÖ
TONY: Is being used to commit atrocities. Endless opportunities for terrorist misery because of what I built!
What really made me enjoy this episode though, was after he attacked Hawkeye and defeated the Vault guards, and realised that the Guards were innocent, and that werenít using his designs. Robert Hayes delivery here was absolutely perfect. Hayes really brought a lot more to this role in season two. Whilst itís true he had nothing to work with in the first season, there was defiantly a noticeable improvement in his performances in the final season. He was perfect at capturing Starkís somewhat tortured existence and his depression. Whilst Iím glad that the majority of the first season cast was replaced, I was happy to see Hayes return. He is Iron Man, in the same what Kevin Conroy is Batman.
An outstanding story, great motivations and fanboy nods galore makes this the very best story Iron Man had to offer.